Tag Archives: #icanhazpdf

Guerilla open access: October chat, 8 pm Tuesday 17 October

Inspired by recent exchanges on lis-medical, lis-profession and Medlib-L on the subject of the hashtag #icanhazpdf, used by people asking for copies of papers from scholarly journals, the October chat will discuss the phenomenon variously known as guerilla open access, scholarly piracy or biblioleaks. This is timely: Open Access Week occurs later in the month.

Sharing sites such as SciHub claim to hold over 64.5 million journal articles, freed from paywalls, but publishers take a dim view of their activities and Elsevier and the Amercian Chemical Society (ACS) are suing SciHub.

Questions for discussion:

    1. Are library users in your organisation using these tools and sites?
    2. What implications do these tools have for us?
    3. And what implications do they have for our relationships with publishers?
    4. What’s the relationship between our campaigns for open access and tools such as these?
    5. What advice would you give to a library user who asks you if they should use one of these sites?


If you’d like some background reading, try these:

Hoy MB. Sci-Hub: What Librarians Should Know and Do about Article Piracy. Med Ref Serv Q. 2017;36(1):73-8.

Greshake B Looking into Pandora’s Box: The Content of Sci-Hub and its Usage. F1000 Research. 2017;6:541. Available at https://f1000research.com/articles/6-541/v1

Swab M, Romme K Scholarly Sharing via Twitter: #icanhazpdf Requests for Health Sciences Literature. Journal of the Canadian Health Libraries Association / Journal de l’Association des bibliothèques de la santé du Canada. 2016;37:9-11. Available at https://journals.library.ualberta.ca/jchla/index.php/jchla/article/view/26060/20281

Bohannon J. Who’s downloading pirated papers? Everyone. Science. 2016;352(6285):508-12. Available at http://science.sciencemag.org/content/sci/352/6285/508.full.pdf

Gardner CC, Gardner G. Bypassing Interlibrary Loan Via Twitter: An Exploration of #icanhazpdf Requests. ACRL 2015 ; March 25-28, 2015; Portland, Oregon 2015. Available at http://eprints.rclis.org/24847/